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Life Legal Defense Foundation Fights Biden Administration's Scheme to Kill Children in Hospital ERs

Life Legal Defense Foundation
July 7, 2023

WASHINGTON, July 7, 2023 /Christian Newswire/ -- After the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade last year, Democrats were determined to find ways to prevent pro-life states from protecting babies in the womb. When the Biden administration attempted to use a federal emergency room law to override state laws restricting abortion, the state of Texas filed suit.

One scheme the pro-aborts came up with was a novel application of the "Emergency Medical Treatment and Labor Act," or EMTALA. This 1986 bipartisan law prohibits "dumping" of indigent patients by requiring federally funded hospitals to assess and treat patients with emergency medical conditions, regardless of their ability to pay. A later amendment to the law made clear that, when dealing with pregnant women, hospitals must consider the well-being of both the woman and her "unborn child."

The US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) issued guidance to hospitals "reminding" them of their "obligation" to continue to provide abortions even in states where abortion is illegal. A Texas District Court blocked HHS' guidance in part because HHS "discards the requirement to consider the welfare of unborn children."

This week, Life Legal filed an amicus brief urging the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals to uphold the right of unborn children to emergency medical care. We argue that the use of the word "individual" in EMTALA should be construed to include an unborn child. This would allow unborn children harmed by violations of the law to seek legal recourse for their injuries – and would impose a commensurate obligation on hospitals and physicians to provide emergency care for children in the womb, rather than aborting them.

We also argue that EMTALA does not preempt state laws restricting or prohibiting abortion. Under the plain terms of the law, only conflicting state law "requirements" are pre-empted under EMTALA, not prohibitions.

Texas law includes civil and criminal penalties for abortionists, which resulted in every abortion provider leaving the state. Although women can still legally obtain and ingest abortion drugs in Texas, existing restrictions have resulted in nearly 10,000 children being born rather than aborted since the Supreme Court overturned Roe.

"We stand with Texas in challenging HHS guidance that distorts the purpose of EMTALA to deny hard-won protections to children in the womb," said Life Legal CEO Alexandra Snyder. "The Biden administration cannot now use EMTALA to turn emergency rooms into abortion mills."

About Life Legal Defense Foundation
Life Legal Defense Foundation was established in 1989, and is a nonprofit organization composed of attorneys and other concerned citizens committed to giving helpless and innocent human beings of any age, and their advocates, a trained and committed voice in the courtrooms of our nation. For more information about the Life Legal Defense Foundation, visit

SOURCE Life Legal Defense Foundation

CONTACT: Alexandra Snyder, 202-717-7371